One of the biggest mistakes athletes make when preparing for their first triathlon is training too hard. Respect your rest days and stay within the confines of your workout plan.
Setting minor goals while training for your race can you help you achieve major success. While winning a triathlon would be great, it’s best to focus on the process. Keeping your cadence up, sticking to a nutrition plan and all the other little things that keep you in the zone could be the minor tickets to success.
It’s not necessary to do 1,000 swimming drills to become a better swimmer. 200 sprints won’t make you a better runner, and major mile bike rides won’t make you a better biker. Stick to drills that have a very specific purpose. Getting comfortable with the type of exercise is the first step to improvement- once your comfortable, 1,000 swimming drills would be great!
The heavier the weight, the stronger I’ll get? Myth. The reason for strength training is to demonstrate strength, not to gain strength. Performing your weighted exercises with lighter weights but excellent form is the best thing when trying to grow your muscles.
Crazy complicated exercises lead to muscle memory, not necessarily a growth in your muscles. Keep your workout simple, focus on muscles that stabilize you and target the muscles necessary for biking, swimming, and running. Don’t stress about free weights, resistance bands, and kettle bells, focus on firing the muscles necessary for the workout at hand. Once you get the muscle to fire, you’ll get stronger.
Stretching shouldn’t be the dreaded few minutes before or after your workout. Stretching helps maintain range of motion, which can increase your speed and power. Working on your power and strength would be impossible if your joints didn’t have the range of motion they need.
Rehearsing the order of things after you lay them out is a perfect way to calm down your nerves before the race. You have a plan, you can visualize it, and you can assure a smooth transition during the race.
You’ve just finished your first triathlon; the picture is going to be one you remember forever. Wear your coolest gear, speed up to avoid the dreaded rubbery leg and “race walk” look, and don’t forget to smile, it’s over!